Tabor, Iowa community helps harvest crops after family loses farmer in tragic accident

An Iowa community is honoring a late farmer who passed away by harvesting the family's crops.
Published: Oct. 23, 2021 at 6:47 PM CDT
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TABOR, Iowa (WOWT) - For the past 150 years—the Vanatta family has harvested the crops on this land.

In recent years, three generations have farmed here.

“It’s been passed down. It’s just a generational thing and they take very big pride in their family land,” said Shannon Vanatta.

Shannon Vanatta’s husband Cole was the youngest helping to run the farm.

Last month he tragically died in an accident while preparing for harvest.

As the entire Vanatta family is grieving his loss—the community in Tabor, Iowa is stepping up to make sure the work on the farm gets done.

Dozens of farmers have spent the past two days harvesting corn and soybeans from nearly one thousand acres of land.

“We had to do this because if this would have been the neighbor that farms over here cole would have been the guy doing this for someone else,” said Clint Blackburn, Cole’s cousin.

Cole’s 14-year-old daughter, Elliey says seeing so many come together to help out the family is a testament to the person her father was.

“I think it kind of shows how kind my dad was to everyone and it really speaks to who he was to see all these people come together for him,” said Elliey Vanatta.

The Vanatta family says they are thankful cole’s memory is living on through all the people who have come together for them.

“Friends come out of places you never knew and the community really rallies around when you don’t know what you need or how you need help, they do and they fill in the gaps. It’s amazing. It really is amazing.”

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